New mother resting in maternity room after childbirth

commentary

(The Commonwealth Fund Blog)

May 18, 2017

Removing Maternity Care and Mental Health Treatment from Coverage Requirements Would Reduce Premiums, but Lead to Significant Spending Increases for Some Consumers

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by Christine Eibner and Christopher Whaley

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) required most individual and small-group health insurers to cover 10 “essential health benefits,” including outpatient services such as office visits, hospitalization, emergency department visits, prescription drugs, and other specific types of care. By requiring insurance coverage for these services, the ACA ensures that everyone who enrolls in insurance receives a standard benefit package that covers, at a minimum, commonly used services. However, the requirement may raise insurance premiums relative to what would be expected if coverage of these services were not required. The American Health Care Act recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal and replace the ACA allows states to waive such benefits....

The remainder of this commentary is available on commonwealthfund.org.


Christine Eibner is a senior economist and Christopher Whaley is an associate policy researcher at the nonprofit, nonpartisan RAND Corporation.

This commentary originally appeared on The Commonwealth Fund Blog on May 18, 2017. Commentary gives RAND researchers a platform to convey insights based on their professional expertise and often on their peer-reviewed research and analysis.